There are numerous advantages to making your household more energy-efficient. For starters, with the effects of climate change becoming more consequential by the day, it behooves all of us to do what we can to offset this crisis. Secondly, taking steps towards heightened energy efficiency can effectively reduce your power costs. So, if you currently pay an arm and a leg to keep the lights on every month, becoming more energy-efficient can be a boon to your finances. Households that are tired of wasting power – and money – would do well to heed the following pointers.
Seal and Insulate
Most households use a lot of energy for heating and cooling. If you live in a locale that’s regularly beset by extreme weather, heating and cooling is liable to eat up a sizable sum of your income. While there’s no magic wand solution for making these costs go away, there are ways to reduce the strain on your heating and cooling units, thus lengthening their lifespans and reducing your carbon footprint. For starters, make sure your attic is well-insulated. This will help prevent indoor air from leaking out and outdoor air from finding its way inside. Secondly, place seals around your home’s doors and windows, as this will dramatically reduce the amount of air that’s able to enter and escape.
Upgrade Your Windows
Unbeknownst to many homeowners, quite a bit of inside air is lost through our windows. Although many people believe that simply closing windows completely seal off our homes, this is far from the case – particularly in homes with single-paned windows. If you live in an area that’s known for bitterly cold winters and/or relentlessly hot summers, your windows may be causing your central heating and cooling units to work harder, thereby increasing your carbon footprint. To help prevent heated or cooled air from escaping, make the jump to energy-efficient windows. Although they tend to be costlier than standard windows, they contain multiples panes, enabling them to prevent indoor air from escaping and outdoor air from entering. So, if energy-efficient windows strike you as a sound investment, get online and start searching for “window replacement near me”.
Upgrade Your Appliances
Many of the appliances we can’t live without contributing to our carbon footprint. This is particularly true in the case of kitchen appliances, many of which consume more power and water than necessary. So, if any of your essential appliances are in need of replacement, there’s no time like the present to transition to energy-efficient models. Most energy-efficient appliances consume considerably less power than traditional ones and function every bit as effectively. Energy-efficient dishwashers, for example, are able to thoroughly clean dishes while using far less water than standard dishwashers. As is the case with multi-paned windows, energy-efficient appliances generally come with higher price tags than standard models, but given the reduction in energy costs they help facilitate, they’re likely to pay for themselves over time.
Get Rid of All Incandescent Bulbs
For over two decades, we’ve been told that incandescent bulbs consume too much energy and have relatively short lifespans. However, these undeniable truths have done little to deter people from continuing to use them. While it’s true that incandescent bulbs cost less than their energy-efficient counterparts, the upfront cost represents the extent of the savings. Sure, CFL and LED bulbs cost a little more, but they have substantially longer lifespans and consume far less energy than incandescents. Even if you’ve been using incandescent bulbs your entire life, change is required to bring about progress – and if you can’t be troubled to buy different light-bulbs, your commitment to energy efficiency isn’t particularly strong.
Although it’s woefully underreported, climate change is the biggest crisis facing mankind in the 21st century. With the consequences of ignoring this planet-wide disaster growing increasingly apparent, many households have stepped up to reduce their respective carbon footprints. Although the sizable majority of pollution comes from large corporations, it behooves every one of us to do what we can to offset the effects of global warming. While this may sound like a daunting prospect, making a modern home more energy efficient is well within the abilities of any family that isn’t afraid of a little change.